Visa faces European Commission investigation over fintech rules

  • The European Commission is investigating Visa’s rules for fintech companies using its network, the company has revealted. 
  • Regulators are concerned that Visa may struggle to identify fraud and money laundering among fintechs, industry insiders told the Times newspaper.
  • Visa, which mentioned the investigation in a quarterly report, said it is cooperating.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Visa is facing a European Commission inquiry over its rules for fintech companies using its networks, after being accused of anti-competitive behavior.

The world’s biggest card payments company — which grants licenses to fintechs to let them provide digital wallets if they meet certain standards for anti-money laundering and fraud — mentioned the inquiry in its June quarterly report.

The company did not give any detail on the scope of the inquiry, but regulators have raised concerns that Visa may struggle to identify fraud and money laundering, industry insiders told The Times newspaper.

Visa also faces accusations of anti-competitive behavior from some of the companies it has worked with. Euronet, an electronic payment provider, filed a lawsuit against Visa in December 2019, saying the provider’s ATM access fees rules in Poland, Greece, and the Czech Republic breach competition laws.

Euronet is looking for “damages, costs and injunctive relief” to stop Visa from enforcing the rules, according to the filings. 

Australian electronic money company iSignthis has accused Visa of restricting data access for smaller financial technology firms, according to The Times. Its license with Visa terminated last month.

A spokesman for Visa said: “We are working with a wide variety of fintechs and start-ups to provide them open access to our global network. We welcome new solutions and new ways for people to make electronic payments and for merchants to accept them, subject always to delivering the security and convenience that our customers expect from Visa.”

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